Procedures

The Purchasing Department, in coordination with a selected financial institution, will issue the purchasing card. This method of purchasing is used to allow departments the flexibility of acquiring goods and services on an "as needed" basis (not to exceed $2,500 per purchase), rather than process a purchase requisition. A purchasing card application form must be completed and returned to the Controller's Office with appropriate authorization. The Controller's Office will review the form and contact the applicant to set up a training session on the proper use of the card. Upon completion of training, the application will be sent to the Purchasing Department for processing. After the card has been ordered, it will take 7-10 business days to arrive. The applicant will be contacted by the Purchasing Department when their card is ready to be picked up.

The standard purchasing card single transaction limit will be $2,500 for goods, services and travel arrangements. The monthly purchasing limit will be based on departmental need. The maximum monthly purchasing limit will be $5,000 unless special approval has been obtained from the Purchasing Department. It is the card holder's responsibility to ensure that sufficient funds are available to cover all charges. The billing address for the purchasing card will be the individual's name, his or her department's name and the university address (1401 Presque Isle Avenue, Marquette, MI  49855).

All orders are to be shipped to:
Northern Michigan University
Central Receiving
2073 Sugarloaf Avenue
Marquette, Michigan 49855

The vendor must indicate the name of the ordering department and individual's name on the address label.
Monthly billings will be sent to the card holder's department from the financial institution. The card holder and department must reconcile the monthly billing statement promptly to be sure that individual charge slips match the billing statement. The original charge slips must be stapled to the monthly statement and account directors are required to sign the monthly statements. These statements must be retained by the department for four years. Discrepancies are the sole responsibility of the department to resolve with the vendor and/or the financial institution. If there are charges the department cannot identify and wishes to dispute, it is the responsibility of the department to notify the financial institution. If a department needs to return an item, replace an item, questions the price charged, or other problems, the department must contact the vendor directly.

Note: Monthly charges will automatically be paid by Vendor Payables and charged to the department's organization number and account code 7136. Disputes over charges and credits to statements are to be resolved by the department. The Purchasing Department will review each monthly statement from the credit card company, for compliance, forwarding to Vendor Payables for payment. If a card is lost, the user department has the responsibility to notify the JP Morgan/Chase Customer Service Center at 800-316-6056, the Purchasing Department and Public Safety. The card is to be used only by the card holder named on the card and is NOT to be loaned to an unauthorized individual. Should a responsible cardholder terminate employment with Northern Michigan University or transfer between departments, the user department has the specific obligation to redesignate a responsible cardholder to the Purchasing Department.

NMU purchasing cards are intended for the purchase of small petty cash type items and supplies along with those items less than $2,500 in value.

The following items (regardless of dollar value) cannot be purchased with the card:

  • personal items
  • printing services
  • signs
  • professional photographic services

The following items (under $2,500) can be purchased with the card as long as the appropriate guidelines are followed:

Questions concerning purchasing card procedures or purchases should be directed to the Purchasing Department at 227-2360.

Note:

  • Non-adherence to any of the above procedures may result in revocation of cardholder privileges for the using department.
  • Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) must be supplied by the vendor to Northern Michigan University Public Safety and Police Services for those applicable items purchased.
  • All card purchases must comply with the University Related Expense and Travel Policies.
  • For phone orders the itemized invoicing from the vendor must contain the name of the individual ordering.
  •  Business entertainment, meals, groceries: The purchasing card may be used for business entertainment and meals (including grocery purchases for business purposes that are not for resale). The Internal Revenue Code under Section 274 requires us to substantiate the following elements: amount, date, place, business purpose, business relationship of the persons in attendance and verification of an employee at the business meal. Because an NMU purchasing card will only capture the first three elements above, the department must continue to document the business purpose and to provide a list of persons in attendance with their business relationship to the university. This information will be required in the Concur system when reconciling each months statements and all documentation should be retain in the same manner as all reconciliation materials. Failure to retain this information may result in personal tax liability for the purchases.
  •  If a department wishes to make any changes to their purchasing cards (i.e. dollar limit, account number, billing address change, etc.), they must submit their request to Purchasing in writing. Be sure to indicate the card name and the last four digits of the card number on the memo.